Monday, March 30, 2009

Book Report Alternatives

** This has been reposted thanks to Web English Teacher . Please visit their site to see all the other invaluable resources available.

Book reports — we've all been there: "Summarize the plot." "Describe the main character." Explain the most important conflict." Yawn!

What if we responded to reading with a 21st century twist? We could pique student interest and give kids a chance to show off reading, writing, and technology skills!

Here are some possibilities. Some integrate technology; others are inspired by it.

A Bookish Proposal - Students examine uncommon places where books are sold and create proposals to sell and/or display particular books in local venues. Includes an article from the New York Times.

Digital Booktalk - Students create trailers, as if their books were movies. This site provides support for trying this with your students.

Mrs. Ojeda's MyLitSpace Assignment - Students create a MySpace page reflecting people and events from their reading. Requires MS-Word or compatible application for access.

Ten Questions - Students interview the main character of the book they've just read.

Twitter Book Reports - A suggestion for writing book reports in the style of a popular social networking site. Includes a link to a model.

What do you need? - This approach imitates a Facebook meme and requires Google. It should be appropriate for middle school and above.

Other book report ideas - Follow links to lots of nontraditional ways to respond to reading!
I would also love to share my Book Review Unit with anyone who requests it. Just comment below with your e-mail address or send it to and I will send the assignment, rubric, and modeled example right out.

1 comment:

  1. As much as I love to read, I've always hated book reports. It's like my language arts teachers took something I already enjoyed and sucked every inch of fun out of it. I can really appreciate these tips because of my own experiences as a student, and also because the last thing I want to put my own students through is something they are going to hate just as much as I did. So please believe me when I say that these ideas are going to come in VERY helpful to me.